SYCAMORE – In Saturday's 5-2 win against the Chicago Zephyrs (8-21) at Sycamore Park, the DeKalb County Liners (18-10) proved why they are a team made up of all-stars.
On Friday night, eight Liners players were named to the Midwest Collegiate League North Division All-Star team. The game will be played on Wednesday at Benedictine University in Lisle.
Pitchers Jared Tomany, John Gault, Luke Harrison and David Deliz, as well as outfielder Justin Abbott, shortstop Brent Turner, third baseman Beau Wallace and first baseman Joey Burney were named to the team.
Wallace would get on base two times against the Zephyrs and would snatch a line drive in the first inning.
Burney showed his strength defensively by making most of his plays but would struggle on offense against Chicago. Burney would end the game with two strikeouts in three at-bats.
The Liners started the game off strong on offense and played strong on defense for most of the game.
The Liners scored early when outfielder Charlie Dennehey had an RBI that put DeKalb County ahead 1-0 in the first inning, and widened the gap in the second inning when second baseman Tyler Hamby hit a double that brought home three, putting the Liners ahead 4-0.
The Liners were able to keep the lead, even after the team struggled offensively the rest of the game.
Outfielder Christian Vendhitti would not get on base after stepping up to the plate three times against the Zephyrs. Vendhitti has a record-high four home runs for the Liners this season.
DeKalb County would not score their next run until after they had five strikeouts in 10 at-bats from the second-fifth innings. In the sixth, outfielder Cody Simon would hit an RBI double that widened the gap to 5-0.
Despite the fact the Liners struggled on offense against the Zephyrs, the team would still bring solid defense most of the game, which would contribute greatly to Saturday night’s win.
Starting pitcher Brody Justice would leave the game during the top of eighth inning, giving up just one run. Justice also had two strikeouts, only two walks and had an assist at the beginning of the eighth when he threw out a runner at third. Zach Strecker would finish the game for DeKalb County.
The Liners would begin to fall apart in the eighth after Justice was taken out of the game, allowing two runs during the frame. Despite some obstacles the team faced on offense and defense late in the game, the Liners were still able to come out on top.
The first-place Liners lead the division by 3 1/2 games over DuPage County, and will play one more game before Wednesday's All-Star Game. The team will host Rockford again on Sunday at Sycamore Park at 6:05 p.m.